Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Health & Pregnancy

Font Size

Vitamin D Deficiency Boosts C-Section Risk

Low Levels of Vitamin D in Pregnant Women May Increase Chances of C-Sections

Vitamin D and C-section

Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to muscle weakness and poor muscle performance.

Merewood tells WebMD that this might explain why women with insufficient vitamin D stores would be more likely to require C-sections.

"That is really just a theory at this point," she says. "We definitely haven't identified a causal pathway."

She says that pregnant women should talk to their health care provider before taking vitamin D supplements.

"We know that some women are more at risk for vitamin D deficiency than others, including women with dark skin, those living in northern climates, and women who are veiled," she says.

Weiner says the study's small size and the fact that the researchers did not control for important fetus-related causes for C-sections limit the ability to draw conclusions from the research.

He points out that vitamin D levels tend to rise and fall with the seasons because exposure to sunlight is the most efficient way to boost levels of the vitamin.

"If this were a strong association you would expect to see cesarean section rates go down in the summer and up in the winter, but they are not particularly seasonal," he says.

He adds, however, that a larger study examining a possible link between vitamin D levels and C-section rates may be justified.

"If vitamin D could improve pregnancy outcomes it is in society's best interest to find this out," he says.

1 | 2

Pregnancy Week-By-Week Newsletter

Delivered right to your inbox, get pictures and facts on
what to expect each week of your pregnancy.

Today on WebMD

hand circling date on calendar
Track your most fertile days.
woman looking at ultrasound
Week-by-week pregnancy guide.
Pretty pregnant woman timing contaction pains
The signs to watch out for.
pregnant woman in hospital
Are there ways to do it naturally?
slideshow fetal development
pregnancy first trimester warning signs
What Causes Bipolar
Woman trying on dress in store
pregnant woman
Close up on eyes of baby breastfeeding
healthtool pregnancy calendar
eddleman prepare your body pregnancy